Rams Wrap Up Camp
Rams Wrap Up Camp
Sunday, June 11, 2006
By Nick Wagoner
The Rams wrapped up their final minicamp Sunday morning with a spirited indoor practice and a family barbecue.
With the veteran camp finished, the Rams will turn their attention to the next phase of the offseason, which technically is the beginning of the new season.
The team will hold organized team activities Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday before calling it an offseason and parting until reporting time in July.
And things went much as coach Scott Linehan had hoped during a hectic offseason.
“We are a whole lot more comfortable with things (now),” Linehan said. “If you don’t teach it now, it can be a free for all for a while so we got some confidence in it. I feel like we got a lot of things done.”
After the final stages of OTAs are complete, there will be some conditioning programs, but the players will essentially be released until training camp. The coaching staff will also get some much needed time away from Rams Park.
Most of the staff hasn’t even had an opportunity to complete a move to St. Louis, so this time can be as valuable as any for the staff to recharge its batteries.
“The main thing now is that we all take care of our business until we come back,” Linehan said. “We feel we are accountable. If you can’t accomplish that, then you start taking (that time) back. We need it as a staff. The break is necessary.”
The staff will report back to St. Louis in mid-July to begin the process of setting things up for training camp. At that time, there will be some personnel evaluations, but the focus will be on training camp as practice Scripts will be finalized and the every day schedule will be pieced together.
As for the roster, Linehan said he is pleased with the depth across the board, especially after the addition of defensive tackle Jason Fisk. Still, there are a couple of pressing questions that need to be answered.
While the Rams made it a point to revamp the tight end position, there is still a need for a veteran with blocking ability to join rookies Dominique Byrd and Joe Klopfenstein.
“I would like to address potentially a veteran blocking tight end,” Linehan said. “I am happy with these guys. It’s unfair to say we don’t have a blocker there, but I don’t know because we haven’t been in pads. It’s unfair to evaluate the tight ends or lines and their blocking because we haven’t been able to put the pads on. History says it will take a while, especially for young guys. We are hoping one of these guys steps up and becomes that guy or we will have to address that.”
The uncertain status of running back Marshall Faulk could also lead to another move or two leading up to training camp. The team has met with former Vikings back Moe Williams and he could be a potential addition should Faulk decide against returning.
“There’s really no timetable (on a decision),” Linehan said. “It’s not fair to put a timetable on that. The sooner is better than later. We are hopefully going to address that here as soon as we can. As soon as we know something, we will let you know.”
Where training camp is concerned, it is official that it will remain in St. Louis with a two practice, one practice alternating schedule. Linehan said practice will be open to the public, though it’s unclear which practices will be open.
READY TO ROLL: Running back Steven Jackson has made no bones about his desire to get more carries this year than any of his other two seasons. After dealing with some nagging injuries at the end of last year, Jackson is in fine shape now and having a strong minicamp.
“Yes, (I’m) all healed up,” Jackson said. “The rib and the sternum are all healed up, no surgeries this offseason so it’s been a pretty relaxing and taking it easy kind of offseason.”
That news is particularly good for Jackson, who has had to undergo offseason surgery each year for the past few years. That means he was actually able to enjoy his offseason, participate in all workouts and generally be merry.
“First time in three years I actually had an offseason,” Jackson said. “I feel pretty good now.”
That has been apparent in this weekend’s minicamp as Jackson has proved to be more than ready to go. Coach Scott Linehan has made it clear that Jackson will become more of a focal point in the offense, yet another reason Jackson showed up this weekend happy and healthy.
“I know Coach Linehan, his track record and the results of his track record,” Jackson said. “That is that he is more of a balanced guy. The run is something that he emphasizes and he has improved on every team. Hopefully that in itself can get me carries and get the feel and get this team back on the right track with us winning.”
Re: Rams Wrap Up Camp
I'm really counting on you Jackson, you better be amazing this year,I think you have too much to say this early, PLEASE back up your smack talk